The biggest night in Television happens on Monday, September 12th when the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards will air live on NBC. This year, Saturday Night Live star Kenan Thompson will host the gathering of TV’s brightest stars. The actor/comedian has big shoes to fill as past hosts include icons like Johnny Carson, Eddie Murphy, Cedric The Entertainer, Ellen DeGeneres, and others.
Thompson talks about the honor of hosting the award show. He also talks about his viral moment during an interview with Boxing legend Mike Tyson, his recent inducting into the Hollywood Walk of Fame and clears up his comments surrounding the possible end of Saturday Night Live.
READ THE INTERVIEW BELOW
RUSS PARR: You’ve seen him on Saturday Night Live many decades. I mean, this guy is brilliant. Kenan Thompson love him. What up with that? Kenan, congratulations. You’re hosting the Emmys. Man. You excited about that?
KENAN THOMPSON: Very much. I’m super excited, man. I couldn’t be more excited to get it done now that it’s approaching, you know, we’re in the month of September now. So, you know, its gametime.
PARR: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it’s a tough gig man. Because, you know, comedy is subjective. To me, you just been a mainstay on SNL for, you know, decades. And I just think you, I mean, just looking at you, when you’re in your skits, man, you just start laughing immediately when you come up, you know, and you just want to know what’s up with that. But I gotta tell you, man, I’m just really impressed with you, man. As far as an actor, and as far as your comedic timing and the whole night. Are you going to do anything special as you host this? Are you just gonna basically roast everybody in the crowd?
THOMPSON: Hopefully, it’ll be a mixture of both. You know, like, I don’t want to do like, a cool musical thing, I’m sure at some point. And then yeah, it’s all about, you know, keeping the crowd awake, basically. Because it seems to be a long night. But I mean, it’s definitely a long day. Everybody’s getting ready in your mind from the first moment you open your eyes? I’m sure.
PARR: So listen, I mean, I’ve read somewhere where you’re talking about, you know, SNL is almost kind of run its course. Or maybe that maybe I’m putting words in your mouth? Do you kind of feel that way that it’s about dying, or there, you’re officially gonna wrap it up?
THOMPSON: I don’t feel that way at all. I mean, I think people are kind of mincing my words, I was saying that 50 would be a good number to stop that, if that was the case, that’s fairly but you know, it could easily run to 100, or, you know, 82, depending on like, who takes the reins or whatever. But, you know, they’re like, Loren (Michaels) might be, you know, getting a little tired. You know what I mean? Like, he deserves to enjoy his twilight years, you know. This job is a lot of dedication and time, which I’m sure he’s used to, because we’ve ordered his life to accommodate that for the last 47 years, you know, but there does come a time where, you know, might be time to just relax a little bit.
PARR: Yeah. You know, just quickly on the dynamics of that show, do you write a lot of your own stuff, or you just pitch the ideas that you want to do?
THOMPSON: A mixture of both. I mean, I used to go on my line with writers, you know, but I noticed that’s not my, my best approach to it. So I pitch they write, I give notes, we go back and forth. And I’m better at it like that.
PARR: Yeah. I was wanting to say, congratulations, you got your star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. And that’s got to be a big thing, man to just see people trampled on you every day.
THOMPSON: Epic. It’s epic. I never look forward to more bottoms of shoes in my life. But there’s something that I never fathom to happen. You know, I always, you know, when I was living in LA for years, back in the day, we would go out with all the time and just look at the names and go by the man, the handprints and all that stuff. But I never thought that, you know, I would be a part of it, you know, and, you know, apparently, Francis Ford Coppola is right around there to, like, cemented in stone kind of legacy and to witness that. So, in my mind, it’s still a young age, you know, it’s crazy.
PARR: You’re in good company. You know, I saw the interview with Mike Tyson. And at some point in your mind, you’re thinking, you know, maybe I might want to shut it down for a second. But you know, and I, I appreciate where you were coming from. But obviously, Mike Tyson didn’t seem to, at what point did you say in your mind that, well, maybe we should change the subject?
THOMPSON: At no point. I mean, I didn’t necessarily feel threatened. I was just trying to understand why he would want to stand on that hill so hard, like back and forth, back and forth before he was able to really hear where I was coming from. And really hurt me. Like, I’ve known Mike for a long time. So it was more like an older brother kind of, you know, letting his opinion off there. You know, Mike Tyson, you know, the person to be feared, you know, getting upset or whatever. So, I was just gonna, you know, shout out man with love. You know, that has so much turmoil in their life, you know, to use a reminder that not everybody that hit them, or everybody looked at them, like, you know, a certain way or whatever.
PARR: Yeah, well, I know that you’re you’re braver man than I. I would have like, I would have done that kind of interview over the phone where I know he couldn’t reach out for me, but it’s all up. All right, Kenan, of course, the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards on Monday, September 12th. Kenan is hosting I’ll be watching because I think you’re absolutely phenomenal. I think you’re brilliant and I just thank God that we’re able to share your gifts and be on this earth to witness it at the same time and so much love to my brother.
THOMPSON: I appreciate that so much my brother. Appreciate it, man.
SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER: